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Thread: The Fall of the Honda Civic

  1. #1
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    The Fall of the Honda Civic

    I thought this was significant when I first read it yesterday.

    Especially in America, the Civic has been a solid small car choice for decades, the one to beat for quality, economy and long term value.

    Not that it's a bad car now but it has been knocked off it's pedestal. Maybe because the Civic is no longer sold in Japan it has lost it's makers former dedication. I must say you could see something like this coming for the last several years at Honda. Losing favor with the Si crowd, boring styling and never reviving the Prelude even. And the Integra giving way to the TSX on the Acura side.

    On the other end of the performance scale the NSX fell off with no replacement in sight. With the 2011 Acura LeMans effort being canned, due to economic worries(they said), I wonder if it is an overall company health concern the last decade.... or if they're just being their usual ultra conservative self....seemingly letting the Korean's take the mantle.

    Please forgive my rambling.

    Honda Civic loses Recommended rating from Consumer Reports [UPDATE]

  2. #2
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    I am not quite seeing what the fuss from CR is about(nor have I ever seen what CR is about). The car is still quality, economical and long term value. They are complaining about fit and finish and material. I think Civics have always been lacking in those area(for that matter, Corolla too). But that never stops them from moving off the lot....They were always marketed as appliance(SI aside), and they serve that purpose well.

    Honda in general has the issue of turning into Toyota minus the good hybrid system. They lost their performance cred with the enthusiasts and they are not quite as the golden boy of faux-green motoring like Toyota. So they have an image and product problem to fix....
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    Honda has never been a big player here, and I would say that they are now trying to establish it as a pseudo premium brand in Europe. Despite the loss of the independent rear suspension in the current generation Civic, Hondas still retain their trademarks in all of their cars, mostly, but still have failed to capture european's imagination, hence never being a particular important player in the market even when compared to other japanese manufacturers.
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    I definitely agree that Honda has fallen off in the past decade. Even though the tuner craze thankfully wore off, every time I see a an unmodified or lightly-modified fifth or sixth gen. Civic Si (which is very very rare since they were all blown up with NOS), I still think it's a cool car. And there were a bunch of other cool Hondas in the late-80s through the early 2000s: the Prelude, Integra (and later Acura RSX), and the NSX have already been mentioned, but also the Del Sol, the original CR-X (which by my calculations is approximately 100,000,000x cooler than the new hybrid version), and the S2000. I actually think the last cool car Honda made was the first gen. Acura TSX (the Euro Accord). A friend of mine drives a silver one and it is just SWEET.

    In my opinion, the Civic makes it's big fall at the seventh gen. That's the first one that I think looks really uncool. The eighth gen. is better than the seventh but the lower models and especially the sedan are way too boring.
    Last edited by demonrunning07; 08-02-2011 at 01:52 PM. Reason: How could I forget the S2k?

  5. #5
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    The Prelude, CRX, S2000, Integra, NSX and Civic Type R have been disappearing for years. All the Japanese companies did it after the 90s, when people stopped buying sports cars. This is not a sign of Honda declining. Honda actually stayed cool longer than some, for example Toyota who have lost all sporty credentials, and entered absolute white-good status.
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    The Type R still is (or was until very recently) here. And the CR-Z apparently drives rather well.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
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    Why would it lose its recommendation? It is an excellent car and has led the way for more technology in the use of hybrids. I would still by a Civic if necessary. And for their price and fuel economy for any version you cannot go wrong.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer View Post
    The Type R still is (or was until very recently) here. And the CR-Z apparently drives rather well.
    I don't think we ever got a Type R in the US and I think they ruined the new CR-Z buy making it a hybrid. I'll admit that it's a very good looking car and it would have been great if all it had under the hood was a hot 1.8L I4. And as long as they kept it light and you drove it under 3000 rpms, it would have gotten comparable mileage to a contemporary hybrid (as did the original CR-Z). You just can't expect a car with the weight of two engines but the power of only 1/2 an engine to perform like a sportscar.

    Even if it does get an extra 3 mpg.
    Last edited by demonrunning07; 08-02-2011 at 03:42 PM. Reason: grammer

  9. #9
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    Think of it as the future. As an attempt to make green fun and entertaining.

    It isn't perfect. Yes it could be faster, lighter, simpler and with a chasis with more pedigree. But even if it has flaws I am interested in the concept behind it.

    I think it is indeed a proper Honda, and a car which is both interesting and brave.
    Lack of charisma can be fatal.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ferrer View Post
    Think of it as the future. As an attempt to make green fun and entertaining.

    It isn't perfect. Yes it could be faster, lighter, simpler and with a chasis with more pedigree. But even if it has flaws I am interested in the concept behind it.

    I think it is indeed a proper Honda, and a car which is both interesting and brave.
    Even though I'm not a huge fan of the new CR-Z, I can accept all this. I guess it is probably the most interesting car Honda have made in a long time and perhaps the most reminiscent to their hits from the 90's. I just hate to think of the future as being dominated by hybrids but that's where it seems trends are taking us.
    Thanks.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by demonrunning07 View Post
    I don't think we ever got a Type R in the US and I think they ruined the new CR-Z buy making it a hybrid. I'll admit that it's a very good looking car and it would have been great if all it had under the hood was a hot 1.8L I4. And as long as they kept it light and you drove it under 3000 rpms, it would have gotten comparable mileage to a contemporary hybrid (as did the original CR-Z). You just can't expect a car with the weight of two engines but the power of only 1/2 an engine to perform like a sportscar.

    Even if it does get an extra 3 mpg.
    you will never see another car like the CRX again

    simply because they are deathtraps - they have next to zero side/rear/roof impact resistance. add in the possibility of a B18/20 swap & you have death on 4 wheels

    i cannot stand hybrids, the CRZ trying to be a CRX successor is a total motoring joke to me

    & ps : the only "proper" civic was the EB. they became too large & heavy from the second gen & never went back to capturing what the Civic was during its first 6 years
    Last edited by Badsight; 08-02-2011 at 09:51 PM.

  12. #12
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    i hardly ever see CRX's any more, and the ones i do see are all in shit condition or really riced out.
    the only really clean ones i see are owned by people i know personally really, never just seen out and about.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Badsight View Post
    you will never see another car like the CRX again

    simply because they are deathtraps - they have next to zero side/rear/roof impact resistance. add in the possibility of a B18/20 swap & you have death on 4 wheels

    i cannot stand hybrids, the CRZ trying to be a CRX successor is a total motoring joke to me
    At the time it was built, the CR-X actually received pretty good marks for safety. But it also appears that when the first gen. was tested in 1984 and the second gen. was tested in 1989, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration only tested for frontal impact safety. It's true that the NHTSA is known for being a lot softer than other agencies and I have no idea what kind of tests and standards any these agencies were using in the 1980s. Either way, it seems to have been built to perform to the standards of its day, just like all the cars sold today. The Australian tests that damned the CR-X's side, rear, and roof impact resistance weren't conducted until 2006, 15-23 years after the CR-X was built, and we can presume that they were using 15-23-year-old cars to conduct their impact tests. Wiki
    Last edited by demonrunning07; 08-02-2011 at 11:46 PM.

  14. #14
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    they squished down to the size of a vacume cleaner even when new - trust me

    they are the motoring equivalent of a coke can

  15. #15
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    I sat in a new Civic, I wasn't happy about the interior. I didn't drive it, but it just wasn't a pleasant place to be in.

    All economic cars have some cost cutting in them. The Jetta got really cheap too. Only thing is, no one really cares about the Jetta, that's why it's not as outrageous.

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